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Red bracelet – Day 75/24

I want this to be written in history so recording it as a separate post. I could call this as LHB’s first official gift to me. A red bracelet that he got from somewhere (a valentine’s day goody bag I guess).

One February evening in 2017, he put it on my right hand, said its a gift for me and kept spot checking my hand for the next one/two weeks to see if I am wearing it. He was pretty serious about me wearing it. He would randomly say “Amma show me your hand” and I obliged 🙂

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I am not wearing it anymore for the fear of it breaking but kept it safe along with my other precious possessions. I take it out to see sometimes to just recollect this incident and feel the love wrapped around it

Yes, I have mole on my right hand 🙂

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Happy pongal 2018 – Day 65/14

அணைவருக்கும் இனிய பொங்கல் நல்வாழ்த்துக்கள்!

Happy pongal to all my lovely readers!

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Sakkara pongal – check
Ven pongal – check
Avial – check

Surpise visit by a friend – check

Pongal brings back so much of childhood memories. I am glad to have recorded it all in this blog. My paternal grandpa, my village, home full of elders, relatives visiting every other minute, coffee/tea boiling non stop, pongal cooking in front yard on new mud pot with turmeric plant wrapped around it, mango leaves thoranam, chithappas, periyappas, anna, akka, mama, maami.

Paal pongiyachaaa?? heard one thousand times in this day, endless eating of farm cut fresh sugarcane. I am glad to have experienced and lived a rich childhood.

Watching Aruvi with Adi now. A much watch!

 

Empathy – Day 56

Empathy is the word of the day. I am reading “Hit refresh” by Satya Nadella and in the first few pages he talks about how this word had an impact on him when their first child was born. Food for thought. It made me think how beautiful this world would be if people have empathy. A simple act of kindness can speak volume! One can always wish!

Not in the greatest mood today. What do I do when I feel down? A recent trick I follow is to keep me engaged with physical work so much that I can’t even breathe, forget about space for thinking. That is what I did today. Kept myself engaged with back to back work from 7:30am to 5pm.

Morning dropped/picked up Adi from an exam we have been looking forward to but don’t have high hopes on. Though seats are very limited, it was an assuring moment in the cold morning to see so many parents having faith in their child.

A mom straightening her son’s hat while he was shying away, a dad giving good luck hug to his daughter before entering the exam hall, another mom reminding her son to rub his hands once they get in to feel warmer, another dad asking her daughter to call him once exam is over, another dad signing to his son from distance to pull up his hoodie. All those pair of eyes had some story to tell, the story of their child’s future. Parenting is truly magical. At the risk of sounding silly, I felt so proud driving my little girl to that exam. We braved the biting cold together and had our own silly talks during the drive. She said “Good job Amma” as we reached the venue ahead of time.

And one more thing made my day, Adi coming upstairs to see if I am doing okay once she returned from her weekly club meet. She said it is not normal for me to stay upstairs while they are down and that means something is not right with me. So, we watched a food video together and felt better 🙂 🙂 I am heading downstairs to be around them in few minutes 🙂

This little magical space I share with Adi and LHB is worth anything in this world and the very thought of their well being and the word empathy made me feel better today.

Maya always tells me “All is well sollunga” when I am down. I obey and say “All is well”

P.S: Please head back to my previous post to look at our pencil act (I uploaded a pic). LHB can now write tamil letter “Aa”, “Aaaa” and “Eeee”. “Ee” is work in progress!! Proud momma moment!

Happy New year 2018 – Day 49

Happy happy new year 2018 to all of you. Stay happy and healthy.

The day started at 3:15am when I beat the alarm and woke up 30 minutes ahead. What better way to start the new year 🙂 If snoozing the alarm and sleeping is fun, beating the alarm is super fun 🙂

Today’s highlight so far:
Visit to temple early in the morning
Offer prasadam and perform other activities at temple
Experience many many first time goose bump moments at temple
Chant Thiruppavai and Thiruvempavai in front of Aandal
Visit friend’s family

Ani’s kitchen specials:
Kesari – 1 tray
Ven pongal – 1 tray
Baby potato roast
Making of Ghee, Jira powder, Pepper powder
Curd rice

Kitchen specials in the evening:
Making of butter
Idli batter prep
Paneer butter masala
Kesari for Satyanarayana pooja

Looking forward to a great year. My goal for this year is same as past few years. I think it will remain the same for coming years too.

  • Stay fit and healthy. Keep a tab on weight management. Not doing great on this but I will conquer it someday.
  • Do not hurt anyone knowingly. Apologize genuinely if I come to know about some unknown happenings later.
  • Spread happiness as much as I can and stay positive. Do not let the dark side from past take over the present.
  • Spare time for those who need and respect my time.
  • Do not stop. Keep moving. This is a year to stay high with my energy level to focus on offsprings. LHB will be turning 5 that means more deals, rules and trade offs. Adi will be going to high school. Enough said!! So, yes I have to keep up my energy level. Note to self: Self pity, cribbing or sulking never helps. Just move on lady!!

Once again, wishing you all a very happy and healthy new year.

Big warm welcome to all who joined blogathon. Keep it rolling!!

Blogathon 2018 – Day 47

Hello hello… I know most of us are already part of 100 happy days but just didn’t want to miss out yearly tradition of blogathon that is unique and so close to our heart.

And those who couldn’t make it to 100 happy days please see if you could join our yearly tradition of blogathon event.

Rules is to post every day for next 31 days starting 1st Jan. It could be a picture or one word or 1000 words. Let’s keep it rolling. Please join in.

Over to Maya and all others who would like to be part of blogathon.

Let’s rock 2018!!!

Advance new year wishes to you all!!!

 

Band Concert – Day 43

Today, we attended Adi’s band concert and the girl played a solo piece for less than a minute in the beginning of her song. It was indeed a proud moment for the momma and I was this close to get up and shout as “that is my girl, that is my girl”. But, Adi had strictly warned me against the thought so just didn’t do it.

But, how can I just let it go? So, made friends with an Indian (Tamilian) sitting next to me. They apparently live in same community as us, started with small talks and literally forced them to share about their kid and then I said it. I said “the girl on the piano, that is my girl”. What a relief that was!!! Phewwww!!! I felt so good after letting that out 😀 😀 😀

That is my girl on the piano bending forward, laughing about something. All the kids were amazing. They mostly played Christmassy songs and I was constantly tapping my feet.

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I enjoyed every song played in the concert and the attitude of her music teacher. He was rocking the floor with his attitude. His face was full of expressions while conducting and just watching him conduct was an absolute delight. It is the same teacher who wrote that “tomorrow” funny response. One could easily see his passion for his job through his actions. Something to learn.

Christmas tradition – Day 40

This year the tradition was followed last Sunday. Those who have been reading my blog for few years would know about our tradition by now. We visit our ex-neighbors in old neighborhood to wish them for Christmas and New year. And stroll through the neighborhood to re-live Adi’s childhood memories.

I prepared fish kuzhambu on Saturday evening and it was packed for Sunday lunch. Surprisingly the kuzhambu (curry) was liked licked by everyone including LHB. Every time he got into the car, he was like Amma get me my fish rice and was relishing it while on the go. Adi who always complains that I never get the flavors right its always either more or less and never the perfect also liked it.

Patti’s are doing good. The elder of the 3 is using walker and she was complaining about how the snow is keeping her inside. She wants to go out for a walk and is climbing stairs every day to access her bedroom. The youngest (our favorite of the 3) patti is busy helping her cousin who is fighting cancer and visiting extended family who needs assistance. Her energy at this age is commendable.

Then, we also visited another elderly couple in neighborhood. The aunty who has a full time job during weekdays was out to a local temple to help with food preparation. Here I am just a little above half of her age, cribbing about not getting time to rest on weekends and this Aunty is out to help on weekends too. These woman are my true inspirations to keep up my energy level.

Of course, we visited our favorite bakery and gorged on mango cake, cashew brownies, double chocolate cake, plain brownies and chicken empanadas. I loved how LHB, the strict officer allowed us to take one bite from his piece, just one bite though. When Adi reached out for the second bite, he said “no Akka no” you already had your bite. Its Amma’s turn now. Amma take it, take it and he was blocking Adi with his cute little hands while I proudly digged in and claimed my one bite. I didn’t get my masala chai from the Indian street though 😦

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Old neighborhood

 

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Gifts all packed…

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Adi’s doodle in patti’s cards. I also added a family photo of ours in the card. 

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Library – that saw us every week few years ago

12-17-17 – Day 39

A major event happened on Adi’s life on this day – 12-17-17. She got her phone.

Brand new iPhone 8 gold color it is. She set it up right away and shared number with her friends. I could see the excitement in her eyes. Santa came early for her 🙂 Waiting for a case to arrive to take it to school. I have the confidence that she will handle it responsibly.

Small letter to Adi:
Phone is something to stay with you for the rest of your life.  Here is to more and more lovey dovey conversations, tiffs with your loved ones, take life decisions, maintain long distance relationships, have meaningless endless conversation with friends, call Amma every day when you fly away from this nest, ask me for cooking recipes, crying, laughing, receiving life changing news about your kith and kin, guide LHB from miles apart and above all be my strength when we live away. Why are tears rolling down my eyes? Why am I so fragile?I don’t know. My fragility seems to only grow as I get old. You are getting more and more independent as every day passes by and some unknown fear is spreading inside me.

Name your phone, decorate it as you wish and hold on to it tight. It is this device that will keep you connected to this world. If there is one thing that I want to share with you from my personal experience and would like you to follow, it will be to not hang up first. Wait for the other side to hang up especially with elders. I only hang up first when I want to slap the other person. There are times when I had silly fights with my friends to make them hang up first. Stay in touch with friends and family and be that person to connect people around.

You saved our numbers as Amma and Appa. You are yet to make your first call though I was behind you to call me first, text me first and whatsapp me first.I know I am annoying so though you are at school and your phone is at home I just called you, texted you and whatsapp-ed you just to be the first 😀 😀 😀

I will always be just a call away from you! Happy phoning kannamma !!!

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Divine happiness – Day 37

Can’t write a long post now. I have been going to bed late for past one week and keep that as an excuse to not go to gym in the morning. What if I pass out while working out or during daytime for lack of sleep? Yes, yes I can stay awake till midnight and wake up early next day for anything but not gym. What if I pass out in middle of the day? You got the drift? So, after all that energetic post last Thursday morning, here I am after a week doing pathetic with my food and workout. Have struggled to even reach 5k steps every day but happy side if I may convince myself, getting many other things done especially at work. Making good progress with my baby project that is so dear to me.

Did I say I can’t write a long post now? Now that rant is out of my system, let me get to the true happiness part of the day. I absolutely can’t skip recording this here.

Today eve, we happened to go to Adi’s school to attend a concert and on the way back visited nearby temple for quick darshan. I made kesari at home and took it to temple. The priest assisted to offer the kesari to God and then distributed to all devotees right away. He then spoke to me briefly, collected my details and shared about the plan to request devotees to bring prasadam at 5:30am for next one month as it is an auspicious tamil month starting tomorrow (Margazhi maasam) and they plan to chant suprabatham and perform pooja at 5:30am every day.

Guess what, I got signed up for 1st Jan 2018. Can’t think of a better way to welcome the new year. I have to prepare and carry one sweet and one savory on 1st Jan at 5:30am to the temple. It was a moment I felt true happiness thinking of the odds of this happening. Why should he choose me to share the details? Why didn’t anyone sign up for 1st Jan yet? Why did I choose today to go to local temple which is a very rare occurrence these days? I don’t even remember the last time we went to this temple as a family.

So, lesson learned is what is meant to happen will happen. Do not fret over things not in your control. Just go with the flow of life and be happy. Be good, do good.

Hope I am not jinxing it and looking forward to execute it with no hurdles.

Tomorrow is family holiday event at my office. I am taking LHB along. The girl doesn’t want to take off from school for these silly reasons. So, it is going to be mommy son day. Gone are the years when I was excited to go in car. My son is now excited to go in train. Kali yug I guess!!!

And that is my short post **rolls eyes heavily**

P.S: It is 1:30am. Have been working and blog hopping until now and just realized that I didn’t start the dish washer though it’s fully loaded. So went downstairs to start it and that little sleep on the corner of my eye is also gone now 😦

Holiday Gifts – Day 36

Winter holidays are almost here… I spent last three hours in amazon and ordered all sorts of gifts. For Adi’s different sets of teachers, for an extended family we are visiting next weekend, for friends visiting this weekend, for Adi’s girls gang, for my colleague, for M’s colleague, for LHB and for Adi. I am glad to be done with this humongous task. I love that ceramic intricate designed flower vase I chose for Adi’s piano teacher.

I any given day prefer a handpicked okay mouse-picked gift over a gift card. Though gift card is convenient and saves time, I never remembered how I used that cards I received unless it is from a very special store. Having said that, I did buy a bunch of cards from the gift card shop setup at my office this year. They sell 0% transaction fee card during holiday season. Planning to use it for LHB’s teachers, ex-neighbors and another extended family for the lack of choice.

Now to the receiving part, I received my first gift from a colleague. She made different type of chocolates last weekend and brought it for the team on Monday. It was neatly wrapped and below is her description about those chocolates.

It’s candy bark based on 3 winter feelings:
1 — Strolling through the cool air, freshly fallen powdered snow, looking at holiday decorations outside
White chocolate + crushed candy canes + cinnamon
2 — Sitting by the glowing fireplace, wrapped in blankets, sipping a warm drink
Milk chocolate + butterscotch + cardamom + clove + chili + dried orange peels
3 — Under the night stars, the cool snow crunching with each step, walking among a winter forest
Dark chocolate + cranberries + pumpkin seeds + candied ginger + evergreen pine syrup

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P.S: I am slowly making progress with blog hopping. Pardon me if you are bombarded with my comments for all your posts at one go.